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Denver diorama artist makes it big by going small

mister christmas web.png
Posted at 4:00 PM, Dec 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-24 19:32:06-05

DENVER — As an artist, if you want to make it big, you usually have to start small. Luckily for Scott Hildebrandt, that’s where he excels.

“I’ve had the opportunity to create art out of repurposing old clocks, radios, cameras, TVs, and putting small dioramas inside of them,” Hildebrandt said.

His hobby, future career, and future nickname of "Mister Christmas" all started with a Christmas gift.

“I wanted to make a unique Christmas gift for my girlfriend, so I built this vintage Christmas scene and put it under a glass dome and lit it up. And she loved it, so I started doing more," he said.

Hildebrandt replaced the inside of old desktop clocks with tiny camping scenes. He put a movie theater model inside a 50s portable TV. He built a moped factory and subway system inside an old snare drum.

“It’s hard to pinpoint exactly what it is because it’s so unique,” he said.

Those sculptures, as he calls them, took him from craft shows to the Cherry Creek Art Festival, where he won best of show.

Then the call came from Meow Wolf.

“In my hallway, in my installation, there are over 200 dioramas,” Hildebrandt said.

He was chosen as one of several local Colorado artists to put their work permanently in the popular art experience.

“To be able to do this full time is a dream and it’s an honor to share my art with other people and connect with them,” he said. “And honestly that’s the biggest joy.”

It's fitting that joy and Mister Christmas go together just right.

For more information or to see more dioramas, visit his website here.